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Fearless Critic restaurant review
New Haven
Groceries, Seafood, Chinese

Tue–Sun 10:00am–9:00pm closed Mondays in summer only

Features Veg-friendly
Bar None
Credit cards Visa, MC


Ninth Square
15 Orange St.
New Haven, CT
(203) 782-1234
J Mart
What is it about Asian markets? They’re like Disneyland for us

We are always really excited when we stumble upon an Asian market. We live in a pretty integrated mixture of cultures, at least where food is concerned, yet we still find a sense of childlike wonderment at the exotic goods lying within stores like this. Right across from Thali, at the end of Orange Street, J Mart looks upscale and pretty.

The first thing to do is order a bubble milk tea in a fresh, fruity flavor like mango or kiwi. There’s also a coffee bar; if caffeine isn’t your thing, there are red bean smoothies. (Who doesn’t love red bean?) A cold case holds cans of strange and alluring juices, like mangosteen, aloe vera, and pennywort. (Who doesn’t love pennywort?) There’s also lychee tea and a variety of honey drinks.

Follow the mariachi music to the back—you heard us right—and you’ll find a Mexican staff (don’t you love America?), some live fish, and sometimes lobster (call ahead to check). They cut and package scallops, shrimp, tripe, and some other proteins, but the selection isn’t extensive by any means. We wouldn’t depend on this place in a pinch; rather, come on a lazy afternoon to stock up on inspiring ingredients.

Vegetables are more abundant, like winter melon, bok choy, napa cabbage, and enormous, genetic mutant-radishes and carrots. They also carry homemade firm tofu. In the front, there are sake sets, sushi servingware, tchotchkes, and “lucky bamboo.” It’s too much fun.

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